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jewishcurrents.org
Founded in 1946, Jewish Currents is a magazine committed to the rich tradition of thought, activism, and culture of the Jewish left.Source
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How a Defender of Palestinian Rights Lost His Way

How a Defender of Palestinian Rights Lost His Way

As the Washington director of Human Rights Watch, Tom Malinowski fought for justice in Israel-Palestine. All that changed once he got to Congress. Washington can be a perilous place for organizations that support Palestinian rights. In March, after Amnesty International’s top official in the city, Paul O’Brien, defended its recent accusation that Israel is practicing apartheid and suggested that many American Jews might be satisfied with a state that didn’t favor Jews over Palestinians, 25 Jewish House Democrats accused him of antisemitism. A year earlier, when Human Rights Watch leveled...

May 3
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Ritchie Torres Is the Future of "Pro-Israel" Politics

Ritchie Torres Is the Future of "Pro-Israel" Politics

While lawmakers of color have challenged the Democratic consensus on Israel, the Bronx congressman has become a powerful voice for upholding the status quo. On May 13th, three days after Israel began its most recent bombing campaign of the Gaza Strip, a group of progressive legislators gathered on the floor of the House of Representatives for an unprecedented session. Dispersed across the mostly-empty chamber in accordance with Covid protocols, the lawmakers—including most members of the group of legislators of color known as “the Squad”—rose one by one to express a position that only...

Oct 21
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How Hollywood Wrote the Story of Israel

How Hollywood Wrote the Story of Israel

April 26, 2022Paul Newman in the 1960 film Exodus, directed by Otto Preminger.Screen Prod / AlamyDiscussed in this essay: Hollywood and Israel: A History, by Tony Shaw and Giora Goodman. Columbia University Press, 2022. 368 pages.The myth that Jews control the media lies at the heart of virtually every modern iteration of antisemitism. Emerging from the conspiratorial notion of “Jewish influence” over the global economic order, it remains prevalent in mainstream American discourse, even as the bluntness of its language has somewhat softened. Instead of claiming that “the Jews” dictate what...

May 2
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A Progressive Foreign Policy Response to the War in Ukraine

A Progressive Foreign Policy Response to the War in Ukraine

Progressive Democrats in Congress reacted to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine last week with calls for targeted sanctions against Russian President Vladimir Putin and his inner circle, a more generous US refugee policy, and a quicker transition to green energy (given the Russian economy’s reliance on oil and gas). One of the key figures advancing those ideas is Matt Duss, Sen. Bernie Sanders’s foreign policy adviser and a Ukrainian American whose father was born in a displaced person’s camp in Germany after his family fled armed conflict, famine, and Stalinist oppression. On Monday, I spoke...

Mar 2
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SCOOP: Internal ADL Memo Recommended Ending Police Delegations to Israel Amid Backlash

SCOOP: Internal ADL Memo Recommended Ending Police Delegations to Israel Amid Backlash

As protests against police brutality raged in June 2020, senior Anti-Defamation League (ADL) employees recommended that the organization end its controversial practice of sending police delegations to Israel, according to a draft internal memo obtained by and Jewish Currents. The —authored by ADL senior vice president George Selim and Greg Ehrie, its vice president for law enforcement and analysis, and addressed to ADL CEO Jonathan Greenblatt on June 9th—concluded that the law enforcement trips to Israel should be terminated in part because they were a source of “high controversy.” The...

Mar 17
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The Wrong Way to Boycott

The Wrong Way to Boycott

In contrast to ineffective—or even unethical—actions targeting Russian culture and individuals, the Palestinian BDS campaign is a model of how to use boycott and divestment efforts strategically. FOR THOSE OF US who have advocated for the use of boycotts, divestment, and sanctions as tools to advance Palestinian rights only to be told that they are illegitimate, the international response to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine highlights Western governments’ willingness to embrace these tactics when policymakers identify with the victims of a crisis. In the three weeks since the war began, 46...

Mar 29
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The Anti-Trans Lobby's Real Agenda

The Anti-Trans Lobby's Real Agenda

A new wave of legislation seeks to enshrine an evangelical understanding of the gender binary and exclude transness from the public sphere. This year, over 100 anti-transgender bills have been introduced in more than 25 state legislatures, the vast majority of them banning trans kids, especially girls, from participating in organized sports in school, as well as prohibiting or even criminalizing the delivery of gender-affirming healthcare. One of these bills was North Dakota’s HB 1476, which sought, in its own words, to “prohibit the state from creating or enforcing policies that directly...

May 3
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Why There’s No Such Thing as a Jewish Gaucho

Why There’s No Such Thing as a Jewish Gaucho

May 10, 2022Farmers in Moisés Ville, Argentina.Military PCF / Alamy Stock PhotoDiscussed in this essay: The Murders of Moisés Ville: The Rise and Fall of the Jerusalem of South America, by Javier Sinay, translated by Robert Croll. Restless Books, 2022. 288 pages.In 1891, a time of heightened antisemitism and frequent pogroms across the Russian empire, the German Jewish philanthropist Baron Maurice de Hirsch bought 17 million acres of rural Argentine land for Jews to farm. Refugees from tsarist Russia had already started emigrating to Argentina, whose government wanted immigrants to come...

May 11
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